Jonas Dahlberg’s MEMORY WOUND

The Norwegian government announced last week the winner of the Memorial Sites after 22 July competition. The winner is Jonas Dahlberg of Sweden who has designed three innovative memorials to commemorate the 22 July 2011 massacres in Norway.

The most stirring of the 3 memorials is the highly successful memorial landscape called Memory Wound. It will be an 11-foot gap literally cut through the Sorbraten peninsula.

Model for Memory Wound. Picture Jonas Dahlberg Studio
Model for Memory Wound. Picture Jonas Dahlberg Studio
Aerial View of Memorial. Picture Jonas Dahlberg Studio
Aerial View of Memorial. Picture Jonas Dahlberg Studio

Dahlberg’s ambitious design is impressive in its concept and engineering. Its visual simplicity belies the complexity of thought behind its creation. Dahlberg describes his proposed intent for the site as “it should be difficult to see the inherent beauty of the setting, without also experiencing a sense of loss. It is this sense of loss that will physically activate the site…People will find their own way through the landscape around the cut, looking down at the channel and at the victims’ names from high up…establishing their own private ways of seeing and remembering…The void that is created evokes the sense of sudden loss combined with the long-term missing and remembrance of those who perished. The proposal is radical and brave, and evokes the tragic events in a physical and direct manner.”

6 thoughts on “Jonas Dahlberg’s MEMORY WOUND

  1. Beautiful, but it is a “radical” reworking of that natural landscape — a gash through the land and a tunnel to a viewing platform. I’ve been trying to figure out how I feel about that and have not yet reached a conclusion.

    I wonder if the changes will affect erosion at the water’s edge of the land surrounding the memorial.


    1. Interesting perspective I had not considered….let’s hope Jonas Dahlberg did consider it and has a solution. My curiosity is piqued by the question and I’d like to know the answer. I’ll look into it.


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